Scarlet by Marissa Meyer

Amazon Synopsis: This is not the fairytale you remember. But it's one you won't forget.
SCARLET BENOIT'S grandmother is missing. The police have closed her case. The only person Scarlet can turn to is Wolf, a street fighter she does not trust, but they are drawn to each other.
Meanwhile, in New Beijing, Cinder will become the Commonwealth's most wanted fugitive - when she breaks out of prison to stay one step ahead of vicious Queen Levana.
As Scarlet and Wolf expose one mystery, they encounter Cinder and a new one unravels. Together they must challenge the evil queen, who will stop at nothing to make Prince Kai her husband, her king, her prisoner . . .

This is the second installment of the Lunar Chronicles series and with every book my love and admiration for this series grows. Possibly this is becoming a favourite YA series to me. As soon as I put this down (months ago, I do apologise for my lengthy absence) there was the desire to pick up the third book straight away but at this point it was not on sale in England.

Meyer has lost none of the charm and interest of her dystopian world with the second installment with her use of dual narratives letting lovers of her original heroine, Cinder, get their fill of the story they had grown so attached to. I did expect the plot to focus solely on new character, the France based Scarlet, but the inclusion and continuation of the precious plot meant that as a reader it was like experiencing both a new and old plot at the same time.

Scarlet, the Lunar Chronicles equivalent of Little Red Riding Hood, as a character was lacking to me. I found her unquenchable need to be angry at everything at all times tiring and frankly irritating and frustrating. This meant that Scarlet was a less relatable character and it was harder to empathise with her despite her also going through emotional turmoil, much like Cinder in the book previous.

With my dislike of Scarlet came a slight inability to become invested in any kind of relationships she built, most notably with the simply named Wolf. He was the character I became most attached to even though he seemed a bit weak and wet at times. Their interactions and growing relationship did not seem to fit well for me and it did not seem like they would be a good team at all, which tended to be the case in some areas of the book. The continuation of Cinder's story after the big, yet predictable, reveal of the first book and the introduction of the charming, dreamy Carswell Thorne have me on the edge of my seat. Where Scarlet and Wolf seemed to be lacking in chemistry the brewing bromance of Thorne and Cinder soon made it spark again.

Once again the book was predictable in the major plot lines but this did not ruin the book as I have found that this series is more about the journey than the twists and turns because you find yourself hoping you're wrong or right which is important in enjoying a book.

Scarlet as a whole was an action packed novel that though at times annoyed me has gotten me excited for the future of this series. Moments where future possible plot lines became apparent have got me grasping to read Cress. Though I am still more invested in the mystery Kai is trying to solve and the banter of Thorne and Cinder I still look forward to the introduction of new characters in the future.


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